Weekend Surf Forecast 3 - 6 October 2014
Forecast issued Thursday, 2 October 2014, by Ben Macartney
The switch to Daylight Saving can be a big deal for surfers – at least for those of us residing in NSW or Victoria. For most of us the extra hour of afternoon light means a bigger window of opportunity to surf after work – a window that will eventually close again once Daylight Savings comes to an end in April next year. Of course, there are those of us partial to the dawn patrol who unanimously rue the annual temporal shift given the loss of that quiet, uncrowded hour between 5 and 6am. However you feel about it, here it comes: Clocks move forward one hour on Sunday so that 2.00am suddenly become 3.00am. So, stating the obvious, this means first light will be around 6.00am instead of 5.00am and dusk will be around 7.30pm instead of 6.30pm. Further, if you go to bed at 10.30pm your body will still think it’s 9.30pm and you’ll probably just lie there awake for an hour.. but I digress.. the forecast is looking pretty good for just about everywhere over the long weekend, with solid S groundswell effecting the Eastern Seaboard, good-sized SW groundswell across Victoria and mostly small to mid range surf across the West Coast.
Sydney to southern NSW
Sizeable, long period S groundswells don’t come around too often across the NSW coast, but this Saturday morning marks the peak of a pretty big one (at least across south facing breaks); arriving to a solid 5 to 6ft plus at long peak intervals of 15 to 17 seconds. While the long wavelength associated with these episodes tends to shut down the majority of exposed beaches, it should produce excellent surf across southern exposures holding the swell as favourable N to NE winds gradually freshening, producing offshore conditions at these locations all day. If you’re game the more exposed, deepwater breaks may see significantly larger surf as the swell peaks, but if this high energy episode doesn’t sound like your cup of tea then wait for Sunday; there will still be fun-sized sets ranging from 3 to 4ft across south facing breaks and even Monday should see another day of good conditions as the tail end of the SSE swell continues to range from 2 to occasional 3ft across exposed breaks.
SSE swell 2- 4ft south facing beaches, grading to 2 - 3ft across open beaches. Expect a rise in long period S groundswell across the South Coast during the late afternoon and across Sydney late in the day. WIND: Early light ESE tending ENE 5 to 15 knots during the afternoon.
Long period S groundswell. Inconsistent sets to 5 – 6ft+ south facing breaks, grading to larger 8 – 10ft+ select deepwater reefs and ranging from 3 – 6ft open beaches depending on exposure. Gradually easing during the day. WIND: Early light NNE tending NE 10 to 15 knots during the day.
Easing SSE groundswell 3 – 4ft+ exposed beaches early, dropping to 2 – 3ft+ during the afternoon. WIND: Early WNW 5 to 10 knots, tending NE 10 to 15 knots during the afternoon.
Leftover SSE swell around 2ft+ exposed breaks. Grading to 1 – 2ft elsewhere. WIND: Early SSE 5 to 15 knots tending light and variable during the morning and then NE 10 to 20 knots during the afternoon.
Queensland and Northern NSW
While the arrival of this weekend’s straight southerly groundswell won’t exactly light up southern Queensland coasts, it should produce fun-sized surf in the 2 to 4ft range at locations predisposed to the swell as it fills in on Saturday. At the same time northern NSW south facing breaks should see solid surf on offer; mostly ranging from 4 to 6ft with scope for larger 6ft plus surf as it peaks during the afternoon. This episode continues to run at incrementally lower levels for throughout the remainder of the long weekend; still holding good size in the 3 to 4ft range across northern NSW early on Sunday before fading to lower levels by Monday. A predominant northerly wind-regime lends the focus to sheltered northern corners holding the swell all weekend.
Small ESE groundswell. Sets around 2ft across southern QLD exposed breaks. Mixing with SSE swell up to 2 – 3ft+ northern NSW south facing coasts. WIND: Early light NNW tending NNE 10 to 15 knots during the afternoon.
Long period S groundswell fills in during the day. Inconsistent 2 – 4ft northern NSW south facing coasts early building to 4 – 6ft during the day and peaking at 5 to 8ft during the afternoon. Grading to 2 – 4ft southern QLD exposed breaks with size depending on location. Early light N tending NNE 10 to 15 knots during the day.
Easing S groundswell up to 3 - 5ft northern NSW south facing beaches, grading to 1 – 3ft across exposed southern QLD coasts and smaller inside the points and bays. WIND: Early light NNW tending NNE 10 to 15 knots later.
Leftover SSE swell. Inconsistent 2 - 3ft northern NSW south facing breaks. Grading to 1 – 2ft across exposed southern QLD coasts and down to 1ft elsewhere. WIND: Early light NNW tending N 10 to 20 knots during the afternoon.
A fresh pulse of SSW groundswell arrives across Victoria just in time for the long weekend; pushing surf heights up to mid to large levels depending on location on Friday before slowly subsiding throughout Saturday and Sunday. Initially the substantial size lends the focus to the Surf Coast, with light winds on Friday going NNW early Saturday presenting a couple of good days of surfing. On Sunday the focus shifts to the exposed beaches, that should variously be producing some interesting options as the swell eases into the 3ft range under northerly winds. This wind regime should remain in place throughout Monday as a new SW swell kicks wave heights back up to more challenging levels across the exposed beaches.
New SSW groundswell fills in. 4 – 6ft exposed beaches early rising to 5 – 8ft during the afternoon. Around 2 – 3ft+ across the Surf Coast increasing to 3 – 5ft. WIND: Early light WSW to SSW 5 to 10 knots tending light and variable during the day.
SSW groundswell. Sets to 5 - 6ft exposed breaks. Inconsistent sets to 3 – 4ft across the Surf Coast, easing during the afternoon. WIND: NNW 10 to 15 knots, strengthening to 15 to 25 knots ahead of a late WSW change.
SW swell up to 3 – 4ft exposed beaches early. Around 1 – 2ft across the Surf Coast. WIND: WSW 10 to 20 knots tending S to SE during the afternoon.
New SW groundswell 4 - 6ft exposed beaches, grading to 2 – 3ft across the Surf Coast. WIND: ENE 5 to 15 knots tending NNE during the afternoon.
It’s not exactly shaping up as an epic weekend across the state, but there will be good-sized waves to be had across all regions over the long weekend. A short-term easing trend in SW swell throughout Friday precedes the arrival of a new SW pulse arriving overnight, pushing surf heights back up to solid levels by Saturday morning. It will be worth getting in early both on Friday and Saturday to make the most of a short window of light/ variable winds that will give way to moderate onshores during the day. An easing trend in SW swell coupled with a strengthening SW flow on Sunday will probably present a good opportunity to kick back, relax and wait for a new swell and lighter winds on Monday.
Decreasing W to SW swell mix. Southwest coast: 3ft occasional 4ft sets. Perth/Mandurah: 0-1ft. WIND: Early light and variable tending W to SW 10 to 15 knots.
Rising WSW swell mix. Southwest coast: 3-5ft occasional 6ft sets. Perth/Mandurah: 1ft+. WIND: Early light to variable tending NW 5-10kt in afternoon.
Locally WSW swell mix. Southwest coast: 3-5ft. Perth/Mandurah: 1ft. Increasing W winds 10-15kt rising WSW 15-20 knots in afternoon.
New SW swell 3 – 5ft Southwest coast. Perth/ Mandurah 1ft+. WIND: Early light SSW tending WSW during the day.
This week’s extended run of solid swell continues for a few more days yet across South Australian coasts; initially hanging in around the 3 to 4ft mark across the South Coast on Friday before gradually scaling down in size over the weekend. In the short term this slow easing trend coincides with a light northerly wind-regime that should maintain excellent surface quality across South Coast breaks on Friday and Saturday. Although winds swing onshore on Sunday they should only be light, so conditions should remain perfectly surfable all day. However, it will be worth getting in early on Monday to make the most of strengthening northerlies preceding the arrival of a strong W change kicking in during the day.
SW groundswell. Sets to 3 – 4ft exposed South Coast beaches. Around 1ft+ across the Mid Coast. WIND: Early NNE 5 to 15 knots tending light and variable during the afternoon.
SW swell. Around 2 - 4ft exposed South Coast beaches. Grading to 1ft or so along the Mid Coast. Easing during the afternoon. WIND: Early light NNW to NNE tending NW 10 to 20 knots and SW later.
SW swell. Up to 2 - 3ft exposed South Coast beaches. Grading to 1ft+ across the Mid Coast. WIND: Early light S tending SE during the day.
SW swell. Around 2 - 3ft exposed South Coast beaches. Around 1ft+ across the Mid Coast. WIND: NE 10 to 20 knots tending stronger N ahead of a late W change.
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